Born in Gainesville, Florida in 1948 and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Charles spent the better part of his childhood living on the streets. This is probably the first time we’ve had an artist make his debut at the youthful age of 63. But as I’ve read many times, age is only a number and Bradley brings a timeless classic to our ears with his new debut record No Time for Dreaming. Soulful, heart-wrenching vocals make you feel as if the 60’s never ended. Charles heals his broken heart on this record and you can hear every painful to healing moment.
Charles is, was heavily influenced by James Brown, having toured for 20 years under the Black Velvet moniker. Through hard times and incredibly strong determination, Charles, down on his luck, was approached by Gabriel Roth of Daptone Records. After several singles, bands disbanding, etc. Charles met Thomas Brenneck, songwriter and guitarist for the Bullets they hit it off and began working together. They released two singles on Daptone under the name “Charles Bradley and the Bullets,” but the Bullets soon dismantled. Charles lost his brother in a tragic shooting, that emotional loss led to the core of his songwriting. Putting words to paper to the microphone, Bradley and Brenneck created a masterpiece with the Menahan Street Band. The album is a beauty and Bradley deserves the love. His SXSW sessions were amazing and I thank Rafi (Tenacious Hand Stamp) and The Marina Machine for this artist rec!
Buy No Time For Dreaming on Vinyl
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY (Bushwick)
Members: Charles Bradley, The Menahan Street Band (Leon Michels, Toby Pazner, Nick Movshon, Aaron Johnson, Mike Deller, Daniel Fodder, Dave Guy, Homer Steinweiss, Fernando Velez, Bosco Mann)
Sonic Soulmates: James Brown, Bill Withers, Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Tyrone Davis
“The World (Is Going Up In Flames)”